By ADAM BUCKMAN
NEW YORK, Dec. 11, 2009 — Keeping up with the Kardashians? That’s easy, since it’s not as if the Kardashians move around very fast.
They’re a pretty sedentary clan – they sit around the dining room table eating meals, they sit around the family room together, they sit around at restaurants, and they ride around in cars. At least they seem like a close family since they are always together – as opposed to each of them being off doing things by themselves, such as working, for example.
You’re supposed to believe their days are fast-paced, and their family life “zany,” “crazy,” maybe even “wacky” and “out of control.”
But they’re really not. In the premiere episode that kicks off the fourth season of “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” (Sunday, Dec. 13, at 9 p.m. eastern time, on E!), bodacious Kim loses the will to live (well, at least the will to work or get up off her couch) stemming from the blues that have set in from her separation from her boyfriend, NFL star Reggie Bush, who’s in New Orleans with the Saints (the episode, a preview DVD of which was provided by E!, seems to have been filmed before the onset of the Saints’ as-yet undefeated season).
Sister Kourtney is pregnant and about to deliver a baby whose father is her off-again, now on-again boyfriend, Scott, who is portrayed in the show as a shiftless layabout whom most of the Kardashians loathe for knocking up their sis.
And Khloé, newly married to L.A. Lakers star Lamar Odom, is house-hunting for the couple’s first home together. This is always a highlight of these L.A.-based reality shows – the spacious homes with their gargantuan kitchens, walk-in closets larger than most New York City apartments, elaborate iron- and stonework, the custom-shaped swimming pools and everything else. The opportunity to peek inside the mansions of L.A. and its moneyed environs have been an integral feature of these types of series dating all the way back to “The Osbournes.”
Real estate is often at the center of a plotline or two on these shows, resulting in “conflicts” to which few of us can relate, such as Khloé’s dilemma in this weekend’s episode of “Keeping Up With the Kardashians”: Should she and Lamar buy a $5.9 million home with something like 11 bedrooms, or “settle” for something cozier?
And another situation alien to most of us: Can Kim motivate herself out of her lethargy and stop pouting long enough to successfully participate in a photo shoot for her own fragrance, a dream she says she has had all her life?
Rest assured that it takes very little effort to keep up with the Kardashians as they house-hunt, eat lunch and pose for photos – activities they undertake languidly. In fact, the fastest elements in this show are the frequent scenes of L.A. that serve as partitions between every scene. You know the footage – it’s seen in every reality series: The fast-motion sunrise, the overhead shots of cars in fast-motion on sunny freeways and residential streets lined with palm trees and vast dewy lawns, the fast-moving video of the sun-splashed storefronts of Rodeo Drive.
The lesson is the same here as in many another L.A.-based reality show: Problems will inevitably arise from photo shoots and multimillion-dollar real estate decisions, but in the end, it’s always sunny in southern California.
TV Howl photo extra . . . Later this season on “Keeping Up With the Kardashians,” Kim gets a life lesson from Deepak Chopra:
Contact Adam Buckman: AdamBuckman14@gmail.com